Music is one tool that can be used to stimulate learning in different contexts (Bruer, 1997). This research is aimed at investigating how the students’ learning skills can be stimulated using. The research will be based in a laboratory context.  The method will consist of different levels of development (Brewer, 1995). This will include a pre-test, two cycles, and post-test. Each cycle consisting of other sub-steps namely planning, action, evaluation, and reflection (McInnis & Park, 1991). The sample size will be twenty individuals in total; ten students and ten teachers to avoid any possibility of bias. After getting results, the test will be analyzed by mean score formula. The expected result is that in the pre-test and cycle 1, the sample will get a lower mean score, in cycle 2, they will get a moderate mean score and in post-test, they will get an exceptional mean score. It can, therefore, be concluded that music can be an effective tool for stimulating learning in a laboratory environment (Huang et al., 2010).



According to the Institute for the Study of Inquiry in Education, Action Research is a ‘disciplined procedure of request directed by and for those making the move. The essential purpose of participating in real life examination is to help the “actors” in improving and refining their course of action (ASCD 2000).

As such, it is a system intended to help the tutor identify an education-based dilemma that can be studied and by collecting information, followed by analyzing it, they can solve or understand the teaching problem (Abbott, 2002).

There are some key features entailed in action research, the first being the identification of a topic or an issue. Which in itself must be something that is significant to the students, teachers and just as importantly the teaching staff, such as a teaching strategy or challenge, in other words, ‘What problem within the teaching environment do I need to solve or improve?’ Next would be conducting a literature review (Davies, 2012). This entails reading research literature about a similar subject or topic will provide the reviewer with ideas and potential strategies that can be utilized or developed, depending on the project in mind. Then would follow the action research question that links directly to the question to be identified (Harris, 2009). If there is more than one question, they must be kept closely similar to each other so as not to make the research topic too broad and complex. In the case of this proposal, the question is ‘Does using music to stimulate learning in a laboratory environment?’  The topic has been identified and is focused enough and as such can be solved in a short period. The researcher then has to collect the data. Any information that can help answer the research questions is data (Padak, N. and Padak G., 1995). Using information already available from various sources can serve as data to answer the questions. This is not only efficient, but it also provides legitimacy to the findings. After that data is analyzed and, conclusions were drawn.


Research Rationale

The research purpose is to address whether music could be an effective tool in stimulating learning in laboratory contexts.

This will be done by carrying out an investigation whether cultivating a warm environment using music in the laboratories can be effective in enhancing the students’ learning.

Objective of the Research

The objective of this research is

  1. To find out whether application of music can result in better performance in the laboratory
  2. To identify whether music could be used to create a warm environment that could enhance the students learning
  3. To find out whether students could find learning easier when music is used instead of the usual dictation.
  4. To improve the practice of teaching the laboratories that will as well be reflected in class.
  5. To develop and implement a model that could be used to effectively introduce this new strategy in the laboratory leaning context.


Research Questions

  1. Does music have a role to play in the student’s willingness to study?
  2. Could music be effective in stimulating learning in the laboratories?
  3. How does music relate to the learning and retention skills of the students?
  4. Would music play a role in easing the teacher’s work when teaching in a lab session?
  5. How would music in the laboratories help make teachers lively when teaching students in a lab session?


  1. The following statements are used to formulate the hypotheses:
  2. If teachers have supportive working conditions, then they are likely to stay in the laboratories for longer hours.
  3. When students are motivated, they will tend to be collaborative and therefore increase their academic performances.
  4. The learning environment, teacher enthusiasm, and student collaboration may be some reasons for academic success.

Literature Review

There have been some varying studies conducted about student’s boredom levels such that by Gilman et al. (2005) who recorded anger and stress which lead to disengagement from learning. Forensic Science students studying at Level 3 BTEC have to complete a large number of experiments and evidence testing in a laboratory setting which can prove to be repetitive and monotonous due to their frequency. It has been shown by some well-known academics such as Baume (2004), Clark (2000) and Gavin (2006) that music can have a positive effect on learning stimuli. Chris Brewer (1995) produced ‘Music and Learning: Seven ways to use music in the classroom,’ an example he used would be to play music with an association for the topic in the background while students work and by making the music more interesting and gripping, the more information is easily remembered. Hallam and Price (1998) wrote in the Journal of Special Education ‘Can the utilization of music melodies enhance the conduct and scholarly execution of youngsters with academic challenges?’  The effects were principally noticeable for those students whose problems were related too constant ‘stimulus-seeking and over-activity.’ However, in the case of the laboratory work the students undertake it would appear they do not suffer from the over abundant stimuli, but do perform the tasks with enthusiasm, to begin with, which over time seems to diminish. Rudolf Dreikurs (1957) book on Psychology in the Classroom places emphasis on dynamic principles to understanding students. Dreikur identifies four areas that motivate misbehavior, attention seeking, power struggle, revenge, and inadequacy. In order to combat these in the laboratory teaching environment music can be played to remove the motives for both misbehaviour and revenge as the student is intent on the test at hand and by constant support and positive motivation the attention seeking is upheld for every student along with the removal of inadequacy as the tests are all positive.



In order to identify how this research will be conducted the qualitative and quantitative methods should be evaluated. Creswell (2005) has the view that ‘action research is generally arranged inside the subjective custom, yet the audit of exploration activity reports uncovers the utilization of both qualitative and quantitative approaches, either separately or combined in one. The methodology for this research will be combining both, as both quantitative and qualitative methods are concerned with studying observable fact (Libarkin and Kurdziel, 2002). I will be collecting qualitative data in the form of questionnaires which will result in being measured in numbers. The ambiance Rating Scale used to chart the laboratory positives and negatives made by the students, are technically quantitative measures but link into the qualitative as they are identifying the good or bad.

The interventions for this research are to be based on explicit activities that are discipline-specific and are developed after considering learner needs (McKenna & Fitzpatrick, 2005). All laboratory projects will be investigated, and the improvements or downturn in students’ skills will be identified. Argyris & Schon, (1974) identified ‘Making decisions based on relevant research and conducting a literature review before designing and implementing the intervention has been important for the participants


Data Analysis Plan

The data will be analyzed by using the qualitative information gathered during the poll carried out using the questionnaires, to form an understanding of the importance of nation branding and the different resources invested in social media by the foreign and tourism ministries. The questionnaire will provide quantitative information and will be analyzed by collecting the feedback and comparing the results to suggest patterns and figures (Schoepp, 2001).

Research Design

This research will be a laboratory action research. It will mean that an action research which is conducted in a laboratory to increase the quality of learning teaching practices.

Ethical Issues

Ethical concerns are influenced by the type of investigation and chosen methods, and they are possible at any stage; research proposal, data collection, sampling, analyzing and submitting your findings (Rauscher et al., 1998). There are two main ethical issues that I can detect whilst working on my research, in order to use the data, the researcher has to require information from students, their permission must be sought in order to use the information, questionnaires can be made anonymous, and their participation is voluntary and the second thing is avoiding bias due to the fact that the research is being carried out by teachers and students.

Research limitations

The main limitation is the timeframe available to conduct the research. It will be challenging to find the time to hold interviews with key members of the teaching fraternity as well as reaching out to general participants, for them to complete the research questionnaire. The limited timeframe will also affect the ability to process all the available literature and data collected (Crowther, 2012).


Abbott, M., 2002. Using music to promote L2 learning among adult learners. TESOL journal11(1), pp.10-17.

Brewer, C.B., 1995. Music and learning: Integrating music in the classroom. Toronto: Zephyr Press. Retrieved, March3, p.2008.

Bruer, J.T., 1997. Education and the brain: A bridge too far. Educational researcher26(8), pp.4-16.

Crowther, G., 2012. Using science songs to enhance learning: an interdisciplinary approach. CBE-Life Sciences Education11(1), pp.26-30.

DAVIES, C. (2012). Creating multisensory environments: practical ideas for teaching and learning. Abingdon, Oxon, Routledge.

HARRIS, M. (2009). Music and the young mind: enhancing brain development and engaging learning. Lanham, Rowman & Littlefield Education.

Huang, K., Starner, T., Do, E., Weiberg, G., Kohlsdorf, D., Ahlrichs, C. and Leibrandt, R., 2010, April. Mobile music touch: mobile tactile stimulation for passive learning. In Proceedings of the SIGCHI conference on human factors in computing systems (pp. 791-800). ACM.

McInnis, D.J. and Park, C.W., 1991. The differential role of characteristics of music on high-and low-involvement consumers’ processing of ads. Journal of consumer Research18(2), pp.161-173.

Rauscher, F.H., Robinson, K.D. and Jens, J.J., 1998. Improved maze learning through early music exposure in rats. Neurological research20(5), pp.427-432.

Schoepp, K., 2001. Reasons for using songs in the ESL/EFL classroom. The internet TESL journal7(2), pp.1-4.